Share Crafts

Keeping Color From Bleeding When Washing Clothing


Does anyone know how to stop color bleeding from clothes when washing them. Is there any way to stabilize the colored fabric so it will no longer run? Hoping someone has answer for me and thanks in advance if you do.

Dinnie from Tampa


Recent AnswersAnswer this Question

By Wendy 7 74 01/31/2005 Flag

If you put a cup of vinegar in your wash water it will reduce color runoff onto other fabrics. Just make sure that you do not add chlorine bleach, as it will cause a chemical reaction.


ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Susan from Hamilton (Guest Post) 01/31/2005 Flag

I wash only with cold water, which means no running colours. If I have to use warm I add salt to the water. Susan from Hamilton

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Shari (Guest Post) 01/31/2005 Flag

When i worked in a children's clothing store, we always told the customers to soak clothing that had the potential to run (like bright reds) in a solution of 1/2 cup vinegar per 1 gallon of water for 30 minutes before washing. Supposedly any dye that would come out should be taken care of by this, and the rest of the dye would be set - though I've never tried it personally, I never had any customers come back complaining.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By (Guest Post) 01/31/2005 Flag

Saok clothes in heavely salted water before washing.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Lucille Gifford (Guest Post) 01/31/2005 Flag

If I remember correctly, adding salt to the water sets the color.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Ann4 (Guest Post) 02/01/2005 Flag

The first time I wash a new item that I don't want to fade, I wash it in cold water with just salt - probably a cup of salt. I will wash several items in the salt at once and I've never had problems with them fading on each other. I also wash all of my clothes in cold water and nothing else. If I want to kill germs, I run the items through the wash with liquid lysol and then again with regular detergent.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Rose (Guest Post) 02/04/2005 Flag

Call your nearest quilt shop. I can't remember the name but, you use a little of it in a bucket with water and the items and IT WILL NEVER RUN AGAIN. I wish I could remember the name. I need some more.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Tara (Guest Post) 06/15/2005 Flag

I disagree will a lot of these statements. I've bought clothing, and after around the 5th time I ever wash my items, the clothing turns colors....ei: My brown shirt turned orange, my baby blue shirt turned pink. They never showed any signs of bleeding until that wash, I always use cold water and have never used bleach in my washing machine.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Daisy (Guest Post) 07/16/2005 Flag

To keep colors from bleeding use: 1/2 Tablespoon salt and 1/2 Cup of White vinegar to 1/2 gal (2 qts.) of cold water. Soak for 1 hour, rinse and repeat if necessary. One item at a time will make it easier to check if it will be necessary to repeat the process.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Colleen (Guest Post) 01/05/2006 Flag

There is a product called Bright White that reverses colors that have run, stops running and removes yellow from under arm area (if it's not too bad).

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Joy Berry (Guest Post) 04/28/2006 Flag

Do you think I would ruin a pair of white linen (55%) and rayon (45%) capris that says to dry clean only by washing them?. They are lined with polyester and have some decorative black stitching on the bottom.
Thank you.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Barbara (Guest Post) 11/28/2006 Flag

Retayne is the product that is supposed to stop bleeding. I haven't tried it as it has formaldehyde in it.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Barbara (Guest Post) 03/09/2007 Flag

In the laundry section of the grocery, you can buy a box of sheets called Color-Catcher. Although the box says to use a new one each wash, we use them again and again and again. I only toss it when it doesn't have a real color left in it (even navy or brown) and it is dark and dingy. I wash all clothes worn close to the body in warm water (even my delicates) because cold water doesn't clean them well enough. Haven't had any color bleeding except to the Color Catcher sheet!

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By alltatteddown (Guest Post) 05/11/2007 Flag

Well i am using the salt and vinegar treatment in cold water for an hour on a brand new pair of 501s. We'll see how it works.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Ayaba (Guest Post) 11/19/2007 Flag

My black bled into my white in my black and white cotton it is grey and black. What can I do to restore the white to white and not fade out the black?
ayaba 11 @ aol . com

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Tina (Guest Post) 01/29/2008 Flag

I washed a red and white uniform in cold water and on the hand-wash cycle.The white is now pink... I am desperate! Is there a chance to get the pink back to white?

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Su Wilson 6 13 01/29/2008 Flag

Salt! Soak the offending clothes in very salty water, then remove them and spin. You may need to repeat several times but it does work. It is also possible to remove the colour run off from clothes by doing this. Also washing alike colours together prevents the problem somewhat.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Francine (Guest Post) 02/01/2008 Flag

The product used for quilts to stop color bleeding is called Grandma's Secret Spot Remover.
I found mine at Keepsake

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Jeannie (Guest Post) 03/09/2008 Flag

I am going to try Bright White, based on the above advice. The white collar on my favorite red rugby shirt has pink streaks, even though I washed it in cold water with a cup of vinegar. I will also try the salt trick in the future. Thanks.

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By MELODY (Guest Post) 11/11/2008 Flag

Hi, I have a dress that has 3 colours on it. The base is white and it has one line of red fabric and one line of black fabric across it. The red from the fabric runs and the dress has turned pink. I have tried soaking it in cold water twice for days already but the colour worsens . I've tried most of your advice (ie salt vinegar and cold water treatment) but it has been stained to dark pink! I need help!

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

By Gram 2 (Guest Post) 12/14/2008 Flag

By soaking in salt water or vinager will it keep the fabric color from rubbing off on to another color while you are wearing it?

ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

Answer This Question